Opinion: How to nearly eliminate the tragedy of childhood poverty, while also boosting the economy

Author: Leigh Lynes

Our Faculty Affiliate Melissa Kearney cites LEO research in her case for federal aid to address child poverty.

"Fortunately, the relief measures of the CARES act passed by Congress last spring helped prevent a large increase in poverty in the early months of the pandemic. Research by Jeehoon Han, Bruce Meyer, and Jim Sullivan suggests that the provision of regular unemployment insurance, expanded unemployment insurance, and the economic impact payments kept poverty from increasing last spring, even though there was a huge drop (14%) in employment.

However, when relief provisions expire, child poverty may increase, just as it did during the Great Recession. The post-pandemic path of child poverty will depend on how rapidly the economy recovers, how quickly out-of-work parents are able to find new jobs, and how sustained and effective government assistance to low-income families is."

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